Thursday, December 9, 2010

Down in a hole

I normally don't suffer from any major seasonal illnesses, except the occasional cold, but this winter is going to be long, cold and hard for me.  I think I'm suffering from a mild case of seasonal depression.  I haven't felt like myself for several weeks... this definitely started before Thanksgiving.  Post-Thanksgiving, my mood became worse.  My normal hobbies have lost my interest.  I feel lazy in general.  I don't want to get out of bed in the morning and go to work.  I feel like I'm withdrawing from my family and friends more and more.  I snap at my fiance.  Even writing blog posts is hard for me; I feel incoherent.  What's going on with my brain?

On Tuesday, my yoga instructor commented that it's hard to become grounded in the winter when the earth is frozen, like it is here in MN.  I feel on edge, and yet sad at the same time, like I could snap if someone crosses me, then burst into tears because I hurt that person.  The atmosphere is dry and our bodies desperately need water in order to stay lubricated.  I've unfortunately been feeding my body with too much coffee and chocolate.  I've gained five pounds in the last month and am well on my way to gaining another five more.  I care, and yet I don't care.  I wish I cared more.

I'm not running because I'm still recovering from injury, my second one this year.  What I have now feels like runner's knee, although my chiropractor thinks I have bursitis.  Earlier this year, I suffered from ITBS.  I just want to be able to run.  My next race isn't until March, but I wish I could run now.  I want my knee to heal.  Stationary bike is not cutting it for me.  I miss the runner's high. 

Little disappointments stick with me longer.  The "craft sale that wasn't" on Sunday hit me harder than it would have six months ago.  I cried almost my entire drive home.  Luckily, hanging out with my fiance and watching one of my favorite movies (Adventures in Babysitting) that evening improved my mood for a while, even though I woke up feeling down in the dumps again.

I feel really far away from God, really separated.  Sometimes I feel like my running injuries are from God.  Running does make me happy.  I truly enjoy it and its benefits, yet I feel like He punishes me because of the importance I place on this hobby.  I feel like God mocks me, saying "Ha ha, Richelle.  I'm going to take away the one thing you've stuck with because it keeps you from Me.  You're not supposed to be a runner.  That's not what I've called you to do.  I didn't gift you with running talents.  I've given you other abilities--music, for instance--but it seems like you thrown them all away."  I know on a theoretical level that God loves me and always wants what's best for me, but I wish I could feel that in my heart.  God is too much like a harsh judge in my mind (a product from my Catholic upbringing, no doubt), too less like the loving Father who protects me and delights in me.  It should be vice versa.

The past two days, I have felt better.  The church I attend is big into small groups.  I recently started shopping for a new small group, and attended one on Tuesday headed by a well-known married couple in the church.  I received prayer from one of the leaders and felt much better afterward.  I've been noticing more and more the little things that make me smile, and I try to focus on them.

Perhaps, I just need to spend more time outside, get more vitamin D.  Maybe I'll try that for a week and see if my mood improves.  I just wish I felt better.


  1. Oh, Richelle. ::hugs:: I feel worn down lately as well. My weight loss has slowed (mainly plateauing with a 1 pound shift one way or another), and I crave more high-calorie foods. Matt has been feeling it even worse than me. I've been thwarting any big dips in my mood by getting enough sleep, leisurely reading, socializing whenever possible, and trying to incorporate exercise while adjusting to the stresses of a new job (which I thankfully enjoy).

    I have been taking Vitamin D every morning, and try to sit in sunshine whenever it's out. I hope those help you as well. It's hard to want to be outside in this weather, and it's only going to get worse before it gets better.

    While I am agnostic myself, I hope you find peace as you search for a new small group. Practicing religion should never make you feel guilty for being who you want to be and doing what you want to do -- especially if it has so many healthy benefits like running does for you.

    Let me know if you want to talk at any time.

  2. totally know how you feel,I'm sidelined with an injury right now too. sucks :(

    hope your knee feels better soon!